Thermal conversion transforms waste through the application of heat and pressure in process
environments with differing oxygen levels. It is only applicable to combustible materials, though not
limited to organic materials. As with biological conversion, thermal conversion requires pre-
processing of material, typically waste stream sorting and other forms of mechanical pre-processing,
to lower moisture content of incoming MSW, ensure uniform substrate size, remove contaminants,
and decrease particle size. Proper pre-processing is critical to facilitate production of high quality and
quantity byproducts. Using certain thermal conversion methods, MSW can be reduced by up to 95%.
Exhibit 4 presents a general overview of similarities and differences between thermal conversion